‘This really happens a lot’
by Jennifer Cohron
Sep 28, 2010 | 6281 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Three of the six puppies who were abandoned at the Walker County Humane Society last week are available for adoption.  Photo by: Jennifer Cohron
Three of the six puppies who were abandoned at the Walker County Humane Society last week are available for adoption. Photo by: Jennifer Cohron
Surveillance video of an unidentified man leaving six puppies alone at the Walker County Humane Society last week has angered dozens of the group’s Facebook friends.

The video, which shows the man dropping off the puppies after hours and almost running over several of them as he drives away, has been viewed more than 500 times on YouTube since it was uploaded Saturday morning.

So many comments have flooded the humane society’s Facebook page that executive director Lane Reno has been posting general updates instead of individual responses.

Reno said she has been surprised by the reaction.

“I didn’t want to crucify this individual. I just wanted people to be aware that this really happens a lot,” Reno said.

The incident occurred on Sept 20 around 6:30 p.m., two hours after the humane society had closed.

A security camera captured the driver of a tan truck walking around for nearly a minute before taking the puppies two at a time out of the bed of the pickup.

Reno said he appears to have left the dogs at the side of the building where employees leave several bowls of food for abandoned animals.

The puppies stay close to the man as he unloads all of them, and several run under the truck’s tires as he drives away. The video ends with the dogs chasing each other in the empty parking lot.

Only four of the six puppies were found in the parking lot at 7:30 the next morning.

“We’re 70 yards from the train tracks. That could have scared them. We didn’t see them in the road. Who knows what happened to the other two?” Reno said.

One puppy, a runt, has since died. The three remaining dogs are available for adoption.

They are a mixed breed with hints of Labrador and hound in their features. All are males and approximately 10-12 weeks old.

Reno said people leave animals at the humane society almost every day, which is dangerous because of traffic and the chance that they will wander off.

Two days after last week’s video was taken, humane society employees found a note on the office door asking that they take care of two kittens, which were nowhere in sight.

“Who knows how many animals are put out here that we don’t know about, but we don’t have time to check the surveillance to see what got missed every day,” Reno said.

Although the humane society has a backyard, Reno said she does not condone putting animals inside the fence. Adult animals have suffered broken legs after being dropped over the fence, and there is a possibility that large dogs could harm smaller ones.

Videos of drop-offs at the humane society are reviewed, but last week’s footage was the first to be posted online.

“It just so happened that we got a good video, and it made us angry that he didn’t even pay attention while he was backing up,” Reno said.

Some users on the humane society’s Facebook page have posted still photographs from the video in hopes of identifying the man from the footage.

Reno said any information obtained will be given to the humane society’s animal cruelty and neglect investigator at the Walker County Sheriff’s Office.

She added that animal abandonment is a misdemeanor in Alabama, but cases are rarely prosecuted.

“We’ll be waiting three to five years for them to pay $50 or something like that,” Reno said.